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The Journal Editorial Report

News/Business. Paul Gigot discusses news, politics, society and finance. New. (CC) (Stereo)

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00:30:00

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Aaron Schwartz 4, Dan 4, United States 3, Chicago 3, Kim 3, Paul 3, Diabetes 2, U.s. 2, Heller 2, Schwartz 2, Bill Clinton 2, Alaska 2, Arkansas 1, Us 1, Colorado 1, New York 1, St. Louis 1, Washington 1, Connecticut 1, Hipaa 1,
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  FOX News    The Journal Editorial Report    News/Business. Paul Gigot discusses news,  
   politics, society and finance. New. (CC) (Stereo)  

    January 19, 2013
    11:00 - 11:29am PST  

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icht. >> jamie: this week on the journal he had corral report as the president unveils his gun control agenda, we'll look at the good, the bad and the probably unconstitutional. plus, from immigration to deficit reduction, what else is on his second term to-do list. and is compromise or confrontation the real goal? plus the suicide of an internet activist finds his family crying foul. was aaron schwartz a victim of government intimidation and a run away prosecutor. >> while there's no law or set of laws that can prevent every
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sinceless act of violence completely, no piece of legislation that will prevent he every tragedy, every act of evil, if there's even one thing we can do to reduce this violence, if there's even one life that can be saved, then we've got an obligation to try it. >> paul: welcome to the journal editorial report, i'm paul gigot, that was president obama rolling out the plan to curb gun violence and the president outlined 23 executive actions, including more steps to make more federal data available from background checks and increased access to mental health services and he called on congress to reinstate the federal assault weapons ban and prohibit high capacity gun magazines that can hold more than ten rounds. so, what's likely to get passed and what difference will it make? let's ask wall street journal columnist and political he editor and washington
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columnist kim strassel. >> has a hypothetical, let's assume that everything the president is proposing becomes law. what difference would it make? >> well, it's not quite a hypothetical, paul. the president just said, if we can save just one life, if we have to do this, from 1994, to 2004, we had the law banning assault rifles and high capacity magazines. the national research council and the centers for disease control took a deep look at the effect of that law and their conclusion was, it was impossible to determine whether it had reduced any crime in the united states, in 2005, the national research council looked again. their conclusion was that the government's collection of data about guns is so poor, that it's impossible to understand whether any good is coming of these laws. you'd hate to reduce it to something as bureaucratic as the federal government's inability to track these guns, but that is about what it comes down to. there is just no evidence that
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those laws make any difference. >> in fact, paul, gun violence has fallen since the assault weapons ban expired. >> paul: in 2004. >> in 2004. the relevant question is that these are proposals being put forward in response to sandy hook and gun violence overall in the country. so, will they address that problem? the university background check would have been passed by the person who bought the gun used in connecticut. >> paul: well, let me argue that some the things he's proposed on mental health, easing the laws hipaa, a federal privacy law, and like administrators in schools or doctors and medical officers be able to share information when they see some kid who seems to be troubled, and identify him and maybe push him in assisted treatment, that kind of thing would help, seems to me. >> it would definitely help. that side of it is the piece we haven't had much of a conversation about. >> almost like an afterthought that the president offered it, but may be the most effective.
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>> newtown event, virginia tech, killing in the theaters in colorado by these violently mentally ill people, really is not related to gun control, it's about what you're describing, which is monitoring and ensuring that those people are taking their medication and that's what's been a weak part of the system until perhaps now. >> also keep in mindless than 3% of gun crimes in this country involve the assault weapons that the president wants to ban. >> paul: most of them are handguns actually. why isn't he proposing then to ban handguns? >> well, why not? >> if most people who are victims of gun violence are killed by handguns, why not ban handguns. >> the handguns are illegal on the streets of chicago and new york, and gang crimes. >> it's also unconstitutional, a second amendment. >> and that was found in 2008, the heller case which expressly involved handguns and guns in common use. >> individual rights.
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>> and assault weapons are also in many places in common use. these so-called-- i mean, there are two million of them in circulation, and so, this may not actually stand up to court scrutiny, if it passed. >> right, everything, actually about this particular gun debate, the first one we're having an a decade, has to be seen in the light that heller is now the law of the land in the supreme court. and what the gun control community calls assault weapons are used as most people are semi automatics and particular ones that they ban happen to look more scary than other semi automatics, as you said there are millions in circulation and the burden upon the gun control crowd would be to explain why some of them should be okay to be out there and others not. that's a hard case to make in light of heller. >> paul: kim, let's move on to the politics, you've been skeptical anything like the assault weapons ban will pass. >> you've got to look at democrats in particular. >> paul: senate democrats. >> no, this is about democrats, okay?
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in red states, in swing states, their communities are very pro second amendment and this is playing with fire in their reelection prospects if they want to go out and touch on gun control again. this is why even harry reid has not said he's going to embrace any of the measures that the president put forward and when you add to that the fact you have a republican house and no appetite to deal with this, this would be difficult to get through congress. >> i believe there's a racial element to the debate. >> how so? >> the president and left is not eager to discuss, and that is the fact the large proportion of gun violence is taking place in our inner cities and it's black on black violence, is what we're seeing, and if you are black, your chances of being involved in gun violence, either as a perpetrator or a victim are several times higher than they are if you are white and that's a discussion that this president is uniquely qualified to have and doesn't want to have and neither does the left who complains we want to have discussions about
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racism. >> paul: and one point, michael bloomberg, independently wealthy, planning and shown in the past election and maybe more so this time, to put tens of millions of dollars on behalf of gun control against candidates, couldn't this challenge the national rifle association, its influence? >> it's ironic that bloom berg is doing that. when you compare new york city to chicago, which is headed for a record number of homicides, new york city recorded the lowest homicides since 1960 ace, that's effective policing by the new york police department. and if michael bloomberg would put more into policing, chicago, st. louis, it would be better spent. >> paul: it's a challenge for the nra political clout. we'll see who wins. >> as president obama prepares to be sworn for for his second
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term, what is he hoping to accomplish? we know that guns are on the agenda, but from immigration to debt reduction is compromise the name of his game or taking back the house in 2014 his real priority.
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>> they have a particular vision about what government should and should not do. so they're suspicious about government's commitments, for example, to make sure that seniors have decent health care as they get older. they have suspicions about social security. they have suspicions about whether government should make sure that kids in profferty are getting enough to eat. >> paul: that was president obama monday talking about congressional republicans in the final press conference of his first term. if that performance is any indication for strategy for term number two, what's likely
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to get done in the next four years? so, do you recognize yourself, jason, in that? >> the public says that the-- their expectations for the next four years are much lower than they were the first time. which i guess is understandable given the second term presidents, that usually happens. what your expectations for a second term. >> socialized medicine is expensive so expect obama to aggressively try and fund his first term agenda in the second term and that means, raising more revenue, more tax hikes. i think that people who make around $100,000 are really rich. you've got to go where the money is and looking for him to hit the middle class with more tax hikes in the second term. i think a top priority. >> paul: he's got to find the money somewhere to get to do this. dan, what about the theory or what you're hearing from liberals and cheering it, no more mr. nice guy. the president is going to take on republicans, way too compromising in the the first term, not that i recognize
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that president, but that's the line that they're taking and so, look,er erhe's going to put them in their place and demonize them and sigma advertise them. >> we are going to see-- they're looking for a look on the radio, the president of the united states like a left wing talk show host. we're in the midst of a revolution and it's a take no prisoners revolution. when he talks about the elderly talking about obamacare and medicare, and talk about not caring whether important enough to eat, that's food stamps, as jason sucked he suggested he's looking for a way to transfer the wealth, not from just from the wealthy, but down to-- >> he's popular, personal approval rating close to 60-- >> the fly in the ointment is the unemployment rate and
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growth rate. he's got four years and if the unemployment gets worth again, there's no growth incentives in the obama agenda, it's going to start eroding the popularity and leaning on him as he tries to achieve the social revolution. >> paul: from the journal, the political analyst, wrote this week that the president is likely to be more aggressive and he predicted it, because there's assumption in the white house that they now have essentially a real liberal majority in the country, that his coalition that showed up on election day is such that they don't need to the way that bill clinton did losing conservative voters, particularly swing voters anymore, because they have a new coalition and that's driving the president to say, look, we can satisfy these long-term pentup liberal demands and you see that as true? >> i would argue that that analysis is probably the best way of looking at this president and understanding what he's doing. democratic presidents in the past, you've looked at bill
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clinton, they understood and they believed there was a real benefit to being somewhat in the middle, centrist and working with republicans and getting things done and getting that vast bipartisan approval quotient. his presidee that, but he believes he has what it takes to have the democrats in office with a liberal majority and that brings up a huge question how sincere he is over the next two years about some of the item agenda, agenda items he's put forward like immigration, or whether this is about taking issues making republicans look like they're disunited and unable to govern and route them out of the house in 2014 and have everyone unified on the last two years. >> and one on the left might be some democrats and some
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republican-leaning seats in the senate, states that need to win their senate seats in order for the democrats to continue holding majority in the senate we're talking about arkansas, alaska, north carolina and so forth. and if obama wants to pursue an aggressive agenda in the second term, he can't afford to lose the senate and not have either the senate or the house. >> you know, dan, i agree with you about the one essential here, that is economic growth. the president can't come close to finding his ambitions with 2% growth and he can't come close to raising middle class incomes which have been falling since the economic recovery started, without getting growth to 3, 4%. that will see, that seems to me to be what will determine whether or not his second term is ultimately a success. >> and facts historically low in the first term if he doesn't get it up it's not going to happen, paul. >> i agree with you, dan. >> when we come back a 26-year-old computer hacker commits suicide after a federal indictment that could have put him behind bars for
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decades. supporters say that aaron schwartz was the victim of an overzealous prosecutor. was he? there's a debate ahead.
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>> the tech world was rocked last week by news of the suicide of 26-year-old internet activist aaron schwartz, the computer programmer and free information advocate was facing up to 35 years in prison if convicted on federal charges of computer hacking and wire fraud over the illicit downloading of million academic and subscription data base and charges his family and supporters say the amount of prosecutorial overreach contributed to schwartz's decision to take his own life. the u.s. attorney is pushing back against the claims saying her office acted fairly and
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responsibly, and offered schwartz a six month prison sentence in exchange for guilty plea to 13 felony counts. a deal schwartz rejected. wall street journal editorial board member has been following the story and joins us now. joe, who was aaron schwartz and why was it it a big deal. >> he's an important figure in the digital world in the sense he's an open source activist. he advocates an ideology says that information wants to be free, so the data base that he went after called jay's store charges universities and libraries a subscription fee as high as $50,000 a year, what he did was he downloaded all of these articles and was going to release them kind of into the internet and was about digital democracy and open access to information. >> paul: versus the copy right and intellectual property protected under law. fou big a crime, though, really is this? >> right, well he was stopped in the act and he never
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actually released the articles. and while a lot of people find this, his ideas deplorable in the sense that intellectual properties for owners how to decide how to use for it, how much to charge. >> paul: he actually disavowed intellectual property laws in the internet age. >> as a concept opposed to it. he wasn't violated with copy right, he was charged with intellectual protection, he was charged under a 1986 law, a very vague law about, essentially wire fraud. very overbroad statute. and which you have to ask was 35 years decades of incarceration in any way commensurate with what he did, which was essentially political civil disobedience. >> paul: in your view it was not commensurate. this was a clear case of overreach. >> absolutely. >> paul: kim, what do you think, grazing the charges from four felony counts to 13,
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is that, did that really set the crime here? >> look, it wasn't just wire fraud, it was computer fraud, it was unauthorized access, it was all sorts of things. you have to look at the intent here and this gets glossed over. this kid bought a computer to do it and they blocked the ip addresses and blocked that and a new one, when it didn't work into a wireless he broke into a closet so he could plug into the network and he knew what he was doing and if you want to have an argument or a debate whether or not the crimes and penalties that they contain are overbroad, that's fine, except for that the crimes that he committed, he did them and this is what he was setting himself up for in deciding to take the actions that he did for an ideological reason. >> don't prosecutors do this all the time in the sense, you know what, we're going to make an example for somebody who is loud and aggressive so everybody else gets the message not to do it.
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>> yes, look-- >> they don't do it all the time. you look at something like google books in the mid 2000's and google tried to start digitizing the books, the publishers sued and they came to a resolution. and that seemed better than going after this kid and throwing the entire book at him and prosecutorial overreach, prosecutorial abuse i think is a problem in this country that doesn't get enough attention. if you look at the late ted stevens case. >> former alaskan senator. >> right, prosecutorial denied the people of alaska free and fair election and literally shifted the balance of power of the u.s. government. this is a problem that needs more scrutiny. >> paul: kim, fair point? >> google wasn't breaking into data bases. again, you have to look at intent here. this young man knew exactly what he was doing, he was attempt to go destroy a business model, okay? and he was doing it with great
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burp. and we can't forget there were other victims of this. people keep talking about him. what about the families of people who worked at jay store who would have been hurt if all of this had been damaged and he had been successful, so got to look at that, too. >> paul: and our condolences to the schwarz family whatever said of the issue you're on. we have to take one more break and when we come back, our hits and misses of the week. . but their shakes aren't always made for people with diabetes. that's why there's glucerna hunger smart shakes. they have carb steady, with carbs that digest slowly to help minimize blood sugar spikes. and they have six grams of sugars. with fifteen grams of protein to help manage hunger... look who's getting smart about her weight. [ male announcer ] glucerna hunger smart. a smart way to help manage hunger and diabetes. to volunteer to help those in need. when a twinge of back pain surprises him. morning starts in high spirits, but there's a growing pain in his lower back.
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>> time now for hits and misses of the week, dan? >> i'm giving a hit to kathryn bigelow to the director of "zero dark thirty" about the killing of bin laden. she's spoken out because she's been under criticism for depicting torture. she said look, we have to remember lives loss at 9-11 and others lost their lives trying to protect the country. yes, some may have crossed moral lines doing it, what they did was trying to protect the united states and she was not going to apologize for